After I started taking guitar lessons in 1977, I became addicted to Renaissance music for a while. I bought the books The Renaissance Guitar by Frederic Noad and Music from Shakespeare’s Time by Karl Scheit and thus built up a modest repertoire.
Now, many years later, I thought it would be a good idea to pick up and record that old repertoire again. It was not always easy, but I had the fun that I played it significantly smoother than in my early days.
Mr. Or Mrs. Anonymous was one of the most famous composers of this time.
The Maids in Constrite is about a modest argument between maids. An altercation gradually intensifies, just moderately, because I play the piece at a modest pace.
Kemps Jig is a very famous piece about the actor / dancer William Kemp, who was also known as a clown in the time of Shakespeare, he was a member of his theatre company for some time. I left out a single note from the arrangement to keep things going in tempo.
The Cobbler is about a shoemaker, you should be able to hear the tap of his hammer. Playing rests and damping the strings accordingly are the challenges of this piece.
Go from my Window is a dramatic love song, the title says it all, somebody is rejected here. The piece is a theme with variations in divisions, that is to say, increasingly shorter notes.
Packington’s Pound is about a lover of Queen Elizabeth I. I play two versions here, one anonymous and the other by Francis Cutting as the middle part. They were on adjacent pages in Scheit’s book, so.
Robinsons May comes from The Schoole of Music by Thomas Robinson (1560 – 1610). A quiet theme is elaborated in a number of divisions according to the mores of the time.
Fall of the Leafe is a rather autumnal piece by Martin Peerson (1571 – 1651). It is an arrangement of a harpsichord piece, which can be notices in the guitar setting. Again, variations in divisions.
John Dowland (1563-1626) was one of the most famous composers of his time and almost had the status of a world-famous pop musician. Fortune my Foe is one of his ballads in a rather melancholic mood. A nice piece to play.